Background: To compare the predictive ability of adolescent lipoprotein classification using the National Examination Survey (NHANES) cut points and those of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) for predicting abnormal levels in adulthood. Method. From 1032 adolescents, aged 14-19 years, participants of the Tehran Lipid and Glucose Study, all lipid measures were determined at baseline and again after 6 years. Multivariable Odds Ratios (ORs) were calculated for borderline and high categories of lipids to predict dyslipidemia in adulthood, considering the normal level as a reference. Area under the receiving characteristics curve (AUC) was used to assess the predictive ability of each adolescent lipid classification. Result: Applying the NCEP classification, the prevalences of high total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), triglycerides and low high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) in males were 12.1%, 12.9%, 26.1% and 34.2% respectively; in females the corresponding prevalences were 15.4%, 17.9%, 21.4% and 25.0%, respectively. Using NHANES cut points, the prevalence of high TC, LDL-C and triglycerides were lower, than those defined by NCEP; the ORs of high categories of lipids (defined by NHANES) were higher than ORs based on the NECP classification, except for HDL-C. For all lipid measures, both classifications had similar predictive abilities, except for TC/HDL-C, which had higher predictive power applying the NHANES classification rather than the NCEP one (AUC 71% vs. 68%, respectively). Conclusion: No differences were found between NCEP and NHANES classifications for prediction of adult dyslipidemia, except for TC/HDL-C. Because of their simple application, NCEP cut points can be used in clinical settings.